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Organizing Homeschool Curriculum
You’ve bought curriculum and purchased supplies you’ll need. Organizing homeschool curriculum is your next step. I mean, no one wants their house to look like the episode of Hoarders where the house was overrun with every paper and book the owner had ever touched IN HIS LIFE.
No, no, no, we cannot have that happening.
But, at least for the time being, you’ll need to have a system to keep what your child is actually working on. His or her schoolwork will need to be accessible for reference and studying purposes.
There are several ways to keep the paper monster from rearing its ugly head.
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Keeping Homeschool Work Organized
Binders or Folders with Prongs
Binders or folders with prongs will work to help control the paper clutter. All my children have a folder with brackets for each of their subjects. When they’ve completed a worksheet, and it’s been checked for errors and corrected, they hole punch it, and store it away in the appropriate subject folder.
We absolutely DO NOT use loose-leaf notebook paper. Loose-leaf paper is a nightmare and fighting with loose papers everywhere is a battle you, Mama, will not win. Just about the time you think you have it all under control, all papers are in date order in the pretty binder you bought for your precious angel. You find a loose piece of paper under her bed from an “estimated” 4 months ago, because she forgot to date it.
Ugh! Yes, I might be a bit OCD.
Anyway, it’s so much easier to just have a spiral notebook. We use spiral notebooks for math problems and science journals, but they could be used for all subjects.
At the end of our school year, if we didn’t use all of the spiral notebook, I take out the papers my kiddo used, and either throw them away, if we don’t need them, or staple them and store them. You can read more about how I store our past school year’s work in Two Simple Ways to Organize Homeschool Paperwork.
Making It All Possible
If my kids left all of their school books laying around willy-nilly, they’d either be eaten by the dog, scratched up by one of the cats, or used for drawing paper by the kindergarteners or toddler.
So, we keep them out of harm’s way by storing them, when not in use, in an organizer with drawers. I picked up two of these sets of drawers SEVERAL years ago. They’ve worked out well for us. (Mine are different than the ones linked. I couldn’t find the ones I have.)
Each drawer contains all of one subject – folder, spiral, and textbook. They also contain tools needed or cheat sheets pertaining to the subject.
Each of my children has a “bucket,” These are book organizers for primary classrooms, but again, they work for us and our purposes.
My kinders and toddler don’t have individual subjects. They have homemade workbooks downloaded from the internet, composition books for drawing, laminated sheets for name practice, and a folder for loose worksheets copied from workbooks. (I told you I hate loose papers.) Their buckets contain their school box of crayons, colored pencils, and regular pencil.
My older boys have “buckets” too. They use theirs for writing journals, magazines, colored pencils, and books they’re reading.
The systems I use are nowhere near a “know all to end all” solution. Most of the time, I find this homeschooling gig is “learn as you go.” I’ve used other systems that did not work, and we’ve outgrown some systems.
The truth of it is, as with anything else, what works for one won’t work for all. This system works for us for this season, it may not work for yours at all. You have to find something compatible with your family and your kids. I hope I’ve given you some ideas as to where to start.